Get your health question answered instantly from our pool of 18000+ doctors from over 80 specialties

164 Doctors Online
Doctor Image
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

I will be looking into your question and guiding you through the process. Please write your question below.

What do difficulty breathing and high ESR levels indicate?

Answered by
Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar


Practicing since :2008

Answered : 14305 Questions

Posted on Thu, 29 Oct 2015 in Lung and Chest disorders
Question: Hi I'm concerned about my wife. She lives in XXXXXXX Her ESR level was 69 and she has difficulty breathing when she picks up heavy items or when she climb the stairs. What should I do?
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 6 hours later
Brief Answer:
Get done CT thorax and PFT.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your question on Health Care Magic.
I can understand your wife's situation and problem.
White spots on lung base on chest x ray are seen in
1. Pulmonary fibrosis
2. Bilateral lower zone pneumonia.
3. Bronchitis.
And in all these conditions breathlessness on exertion with high ESR are seen.
So better to consult pulmonologist and get done
1. Clinical examination of respiratory system
2. CT thorax
3. PFT (Pulmonary Function Test).. CT thorax is needed to rule out fibrosis and pneumonia. PFT is must for the diagnosis of bronchitis.
She may need antibiotics, inhaled bronchodilators and inhaled corticosteroid (ICS).
Hope I have solved your query.
I will be happy to help you further.
Wishing good health to your wife. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 17 hours later
She did a PFT and she was told that her lung capacity was a little low but not to the point she needed to be worried. She thinks she has lung cancer or some serious life threatening issues. She saw a pulmonologist and he insisted that there was nothing to be concerned with. He told her she had a mild case of bronchiectasis. He told he can do a bronchoscopy with lavage and get a sputum sample. Her ESR was initially 44 and he prescribed her clarithromycin 500 mg twice a day for five days. She finished the course and went to repeat the ESR and thats when her result was 69. So the doctor said we needed a sputum sample but she wasn't able to give a sample. So thats when he insisted to do a lavage and bronchoscopy. She is worried that the sample is going to show something serious. I just wanted to know if I needed to be worried after all this. Thanks. Looking forward to your reply.

Also she was diagnosed with dengue fever about two months ago so I didn't know if that had anything to do with her breathing difficulties or her ESR being high.
Answered by Dr. Kaushal Bhavsar 11 hours later
Brief Answer:
Get done broncoscopy and lavage.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your follow up question on HCM.
I can understand your concern.
First of no need to worry for lung cancer.
Her high ESR is mostly due to infection.
She is having mild bronchiectesis.
And infection is very common bronchiectesis. So we need to first isolate the causative organism for infection.
So that we can start appropriate antibiotic treatment.
And for this sputum sample is required. If she is not able to expectorate good quality sputum than bronchoscopy with XXXXXXX (bronchoalveolar lavage) is the only option.
So better to get done lavage for isolation of organism and starting of appropriate antibiotic.
Hope I have solved your query.
If you are not having further queries, then please close the conversation and rate my answer.
You can ask me directly on
Wishing good health to your wife. Thanks.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vinay Bhardwaj

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
Question is related to
Diseases and Conditions ,   ,   ,   ,  
Medical Procedures
Lab Tests

Recent questions on  Difficulty breathing

doctor1 MD

My wife has sores on her arms and legs. She also recently has been complaining about her bones aching. Occasionally she will experience tightness in her chest. What could be causing this?

doctor1 MD

My husband is complaining of difficulty breathing and tightness in his chest. This happened shortly after dinner so he wondered if he ate too much but that could not be the cause. He is 69 and has been relaxing all day. What should I do? Be aware...

doctor1 MD

I'm a 72 year old woman in very good health but just last night I experienced tightening in my chest and difficulty breathing . I could not sleep on either side and my breathing is shallow to lessen the pain. I have been lifting heavy luggage over...

doctor1 MD

I have had a pain in my throat for a week that causes me to have pain while swallowing . I then proceeded to take aleve after the pain could not be tamed by sore throat paid aid and now I have the feeling that my chest is a little heavy and when i breath in and out here is a small discomfort that indicates that my chest is becoming a little heavy.

doctor1 MD

Hello, recently I went to urgent care with chest pain and periodically needing to take a deep breath. I really thought I would be going in for stress . They did a CT scan and they said they found a small shadow that they believed was a small clot. They had me go th er where they had me stay over night, my vent scan came back with low probability, the sonos on my legs found no clots, I have since been home and chest pain comes and goes and I really only have to take a deep breath when I am getting more stressed over this. It has been 3 days and I am still waiting results on the d dimer. I have also spent a lot of money on a months worth of blood thinners for the posibility it could come back negative. I am also a perfectly health 31 yr old female, non smoker, active, good shape, only had a laproscopic appendectomy last month. I am just not sure where to go from here because I am doubting my drs now

doctor1 MD

How come when I cough , I feel like I have an itch? It s driving me crazy. I ve been sick for about 3 days now, and idk if it s a small cold or something serious. But this morning I woke up with it kinda hard to breath because I had a lot of mucus in my chest or wherever, so I had to cough to clear it up. Just wondering if the coughing and getting itching sensation is tied to any of that.

doctor1 MD

Hi, I am 23 years old student, weight 43kg, high 154sm. Since i went to college(3 years), i felt some palpitations, first after some activity, and then for no reason, even when i was just sitting. Last years i made some tests, ECG showed normal rhythm, but 125bpm, and the echo and TSH were normal. Sometimes, if I have some worries or sth, i feel like i can not fill myself with air, like sth stops me in taking a deep breath, so i think anxiety cause that all, but it's not normal for me that my heart rate is never below 100bpm. Also, i can feel the beating in abdominal aorta, and with my 43kg it's not difficult to notice it without touching. Just 10 minutes ago i had one of those episodes (mentioning that these 2 days i am i little tired), so i checked the blood presure, it was 130/80, which i think is another problem.
Any thoughts? Last year the doctor said it's all about emotions, but i can't stop to think about that, especially when i feel like today, like my heart is gonna fly away.